Thursday, January 22, 2009

I Am Humbled

As I mentioned in previous posts, I am signed up for a stair-climbing event called Hustle Up the Hancock that consists of climbing 94 floors of stairs in one of the tallest buildings in Chicago. It is one month from today.

I finally buckled down and practiced on the stairs at work. From the basement to the roof, my building has 13 1/2 floors of stairs, and I climbed down and then up them at lunchtime with a co-worker who also signed up for the event for the first time. She is probably 110 pounds soaking wet and I am, well, damn near double that. She also runs on a regular basis.

We climbed down 13 1/2 floors and then right back up them... about 7 minutes total for the round trip. The way down was a brisk walk, and the way up we went at a good clip. By Floor 5 I was questioning if I could make it back up. By Floor 8, I was berating myself signing up for the event. At Floor 10 my throat was sore and I was panting even harder than Jillian has ever made me pant in the 30 Day Shred, and by the time I neared Floor 12 my heart rate was up to 189!!!! Dear God!!!! I also have spent the rest of the day coughing my lungs out, although it is subsiding a bit now. Someone told me that it is exercise-induced asthma, but I have never experienced this before so I really do not know why it is happening.

She was not breathing as hard as I was, but her legs were burning while mine did not feel fatigued at all. So it appears that my muscles are stronger, but her cardiovascular fitness blows mine away. Needless to say, we called it a day after just one cycle down and then up again.

I thought that running would prepare me for this, but I was wrong. So very, very wrong. Now I am scared, and I have to seriously focus on getting myself ready for this event. My co-worker and I will not be climbing together until next Thursday because she has to travel for work, but I am going to practice by myself each day until then because I have some hard work to do. Tomorrow I am going to take my pace WAY down and keep my heart rate somewhere in the safe zone. Then I am going to start to work some sprints in there next week so that I can build up my threshold and speed.

Hopefully it will be like my workouts with Jillian, which are now very doable and no longer make me sore. I am praying that, this time next week, I can tell you that I made great strides in this stair-climbing stuff so that I do not have to throw myself down them in order to miss the event!

I am off to meet Jillian for the 5th day in a row... wish me luck!


Al's CL Reviews said...

I'm sure you can do it!

Delane said...

The first time kinda sucks becuse you have no muscle memory! don't worry you will be fine.

Everyone was coughing after it last year. I think its the dry dusty stairwell.

I hope you calves are not in pain. I was fine, but my calves killed the first few climbs. Also, the gauntlet if they have one at the gym is the best for training!